Some of the world’s biggest food and drink companies are under fire for selling inferior products to eastern European consumers. Over in America, Amazon isn’t the only one opening new digs and one Whole Foods supplier is hopeful about its future under the e-commerce giant.




Monday, 18 September 2017





Greetings!

Some of the world’s biggest food and drink companies are under fire for selling inferior products to eastern European consumers. Over in America, Amazon isn’t the only one opening new digs and one Whole Foods supplier is hopeful about its future under the e-commerce giant.




Europe


Quality control ▪ The European commission has launched a blistering attack on the world’s largest food and drink companies, saying they have “cheated and misled” shoppers in eastern Europe for years. They are being accused of selling inferior versions of well-known brands in a flagrant breach of law.



Catwalk ready ▪ Amazon is keeping the fashion industry on its toes, taking “see now, buy now” to a whole new level. The online heavyweight is trialling a one-hour delivery service for clothes seen on the catwalk in a London fashion show.



Fresh start ▪ Hypermarket operator Cora has opened its first French store in more than two decades. It’s an interesting move, says LZ Retailytics, and an exception to its parent company’s wider strategy. Russian retailer X5 is reportedly developing forecourt stores under its Pyaterochka banner.




USA & Canada


Walmart on the lookout ▪ The company is the latest retailer to be looking for a new home. Unlike Amazon though, it plans to keep its headquarters staff in its homestate of Arkansas. The new facility will reflect its ongoing pivot towards e-commerce.



Staying positive ▪ The worst could be over for Sobeys’ parent company, Empire, with earnings beating analyst expectations. The Canadian food conglomerate enjoyed accelerated turnaround, but its CEO warned it is not out of the woods yet. Shareholders of Whole Foods supplier United Natural Foods might be nervous about Amazon’s takeover, but the company is cautiously optimistic.



Struggle street ▪ It is becoming increasingly likely that Toys ‘R’ Us will file for bankruptcy as pressure from skittish suppliers intensifies. Embattled retailer Sears Canada is reportedly negotiating a private-equity backed deal, which could see it cut its store footprint in half but retain 8,000 jobs and pay off bankruptcy loans.




Asia & Australia


Taking on Amazon ▪ Australian supermarkets are taking the impending threat of the online behemoth seriously, ramping up their online services. However, their efforts are being hampered by shoppers reluctant to make the shift to digital – a challenge that will be equally worrying for Amazon.



Digital dollars ▪ Japanese banks are getting behind a new digital currency called J Coin, as they look to fend off the growing might of international tech giants and their e-payments services. One such player, Alibaba’s Ant Financial, is hoping for a case of third time lucky as it tries for approval to take over US payments firm MoneyGram.



Rock bottom ▪ Shares in struggling Australian department store Myer have fallen to an all-time low as investors punish the company for analysts downgrading its stock. The news comes after the company’s disappointing results were reported last week.




Insider insights


Bets are in ▪ In one of the greatest retail battles of our time – Walmart vs. Amazon – who comes out on top when it comes to being a good investment? The smart money is on the online giant… but once you dig deeper it’s not that straightforward.



Natural state ▪ Amazon is not the only one to recognise the hot new trend towards natural food and beverages. The industry grew nearly 10% to US$ 75 billion last year, with most shoppers looking to traditional supermarkets for their health fix. Watch the opening address of the Natural Products Expo East here.